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Southcare continues to be vigilant in its management of COVID-19 and our COVID-19 Response Plan remains firmly in place.
Read three open letters from Chief Executive Officer Dr Nicky Howe about our role as an essential service and how we are continuing to protect and connect during:
We recognise this is an unsettling time for some, but rest assured we are continually monitoring the evolving situation.
As an essential service, our in-home care is continuing in this new era of protection and connection. Feedback from our customers, families, volunteers and employees has been excellent as we unite to protect our most vulnerable community members.
We continue to be guided by the Aged Care Quality Commission and follow the Department of Health (at a Federal and State level) as well as the World Health Organisation.
Read what we are doing to further protect our customers. employees, volunteers and the community, including with the changes to the WA border and how we meet the Aged Care Quality and Safety Standards (ACQS) and some frequently asked questions below.
Additional measures Southcare has put in place – posted March 2020:
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Is Southcare trained in managing Coronavirus?
Yes, all employees have completed mandatory training issued by the Department of Health. The training was robust and covered all aspects of managing COVID-19 with particular emphasis on aged care services and infection control to protect customers, their families and Southcare employees.
Does Southcare have an emergency response plan for COVID-19?
Yes and we have activated that and as circumstances change in this fast-paced environment, the plan is updated. The plan ensures the health, safety and wellbeing of our customers, staff and volunteers are maximised. It also means we are taking action to mitigate community spread.
Should I cancel my service?
There is no need to cancel services. We are an essential service and continue to deliver excellent care in this new era of protection and connection. We have zero cases and continue to be vigilant to keep it that way. All the necessary and proper procedures are in place to ensure the highest level of protection for customers and staff.
If you or a loved one have been allocated services, it is because you or they need them. If you stop the service, it will have an impact on your well being and at this time it is important to maintain a quality and healthy lifestyle, albeit with a heightened sense of responsibility.
Read more about why the Federal Government recommends you should keep your home care, including advice from Australia’s Chief Medical Officer.
Does Southcare have sufficient Personal Protective Equipment?
Yes, our infection control procedures are vigorous and our front line teams are all equipped with gloves, masks, gowns and eye masks, as well as necessary cleaning and hygiene products including single use paper towels to dry hands. We have been fortunate to receive additional supplies of PPE from the Rotary Club of Como and members of our local community ensuring our team will be suitably protected during home care visits. Read more about our PPE resources on the Southcare blog.
With the State Government mandate on masks in February, all Southcarers have been issued with a fabric mask and will wear them when out of home.
What about the flu vaccination?
All Southcare staff and volunteers have up-to-date flu vaccinations.
How can I connect?
We suggest videochats, phonecalls and contact that respects the current social gathering and social distancing guidelines. You can still see and speak to your loved ones. There has never been a more important time to connect in this socially isolating season. Read more about how we are being a good neighbour on the Southcare blog.
We also recommend that you call the free support line (1800 171 866) which has been set up for our senior Australians, their families and carers for COVID-19. The support line operates Monday to Friday (except public holidays) between 8.30am and 6pm. It’s so important to connect right now, ask the questions and look after each other and our mental health.
You can also follow the daily updates on the Australian Government Department of Health website, www.health.gov.au or call the Coronavirus hotline on 1800 020 080.
Can you help with financial assistance?
Yes, our free and confidential financial counselling service, offers advice to help you manage during difficult financial situations.
Can you provide resources on COVID-19 and mental health?
Yes, the Department of Health’s ‘Head to Health’ portal has digital mental health services from some of Australia’s most trusted organisations. It brings together apps, online programs, online forums, and phone services, as well as a range of digital information resources.
You can also access digital and phone support with digital and telehealth support services, including for vulnerable people and those with severe and complex needs during COVID-19.
There is also a flyer detailing COVID-19 support offered by Beyond Blue which can be printed and displayed as you wish.
Is help available in other languages?
Yes, information on COVID-19 has been translated into 63 different languages. You can access resources including fact sheets, guidelines and other publications from the Australian Government Department of Health website including:
We update this page with changes as they occur to ensure transparency with our customers, their families, our employees and volunteers. Page last updated 9 April 2021.